The last cruise ship, the Seaborne Sojourner, pulled out of old Sitka Docks this afternoon. The visitors were treated to rare late September sunshine. While a few straggling tourists will still come in on individual tours (and we are glad … Continue reading 25th Annual Running of the Boots.
This blogpost started with a Facebook message from Joe Montagna. Joe is a musician and elementary school teacher who played the “Brian May” part in a Queen tribute organized by the Sitka Fine Arts Camp. I attended the Friday performance, … Continue reading We Will, We Will Rock You!
In Sitka Eagles get free health care. The Alaska Raptor Rehabilitation Center cares for eagles and other birds who run afoul of humans, trees or each other. Each year the center takes in eagles. Some can be rehabilitated, some cannot … Continue reading A Hole in the Wing.
Sitka knows how to play. Labor Day Weekend featured a classical concert, Jazz and Mud Ball, a softball tournament that is usually played in the mud, but not so much this year. But for us the highlight was a three-way … Continue reading Earthquake? We Missed It, Too Busy Rocking the Dock.
The NOAA website predicted a “minor magnetic storm” for August 30 and 31. As the weekend progressed the predictions of magnetic activity became more intense and prolonged, into the first days of September. And the clincher, the weather in Sitka … Continue reading A Minor Magnetic Storm
On Friday night we flew out of Anchorage, up Knik Arm and crossed over the Chugach range and Prince William Sound, flying over some of the same glacier we saw a little over a week earlier on the 26 Glacier … Continue reading Prince William Sound, and More, from Above.
The 26 Glacier Cruise is a staple of tourism in Prince William Sound. Although now it is not 26 glaciers. Some have retreated to the point where an arm of land has split them so there are more than 26. … Continue reading Prince William Sound at Sea Level
John Sebastian sounded old when he started singing and I was beginning to wonder if this would be one of those festival workshops that would make me sad, reminding me of my own diminished abilities. But his guitar was sure … Continue reading Winnipeg Folk Festival, 2019
The Sitka Daily Sentinel. Sitka’s Daily Newspaper had a great float, right about in the middle of the parade, AND, after the Coast guard got the biggest applause of the parade. Congratulations Thad and Sandy. After the parade ended the … Continue reading And the Winner Is…
…That’s how long this year’s 4th of July parade lasted – 22 minutes. I know this because I watch the parade from just behind St. Michael’s Cathedral in the “press section.” We see the parade come at us head on … Continue reading Twenty Two Minutes…
When I lived abroad, I idealized our holidays. Thanksgiving was always more thankful looking at it from abroad than it was when I got home. The Fourth of July was the same way. I have always loved this holiday more … Continue reading Glorious Fourth!
When I was a kid the fireworks show started with a puff, then a thud, then you saw a burst in the sky. You waited 10 seconds and it happened again. Then again, until the finale when they fired off … Continue reading Fireworks! July 3, 2019
After the fireworks on the 3rd, the parade, the food, the concerts comes the water fight. Traditionally the Sitka Fire Department takes on the Coast Guard. Fire trucks come from two different directions, meet in the middle and pass each … Continue reading Water Fight!
Back in 1993 member of the committee drafting the Albanian Constitution asked me who was right in their view of government, Jefferson or Adams. I thought about an answer and told him this story. Later I was asked to tell … Continue reading After 247 Years, Jefferson Still Lives!
June is chamber music month in Sitka. The Sitka Summer Music Festival (SSMF) has been a feature of or town since 1974. Chamber music is everywhere, at Mean Queen Pizza, on the Sheldon Jackson Fine Arts Campus, in the Tribal … Continue reading A Town Full of Chamber Music.
In which I say goodbye to a ship named Prinsendam – the second time around. I was new to Juneau, looking across Gastineau Channel from my home in North Douglas. A neat little cruise ship pulled into Juneau’s dock. It … Continue reading Goodbye Old Friend
We had planned a longer cruise on Prinsendam in July-August 2019 but Holland America sold the ship and shifted the cruises to another ship. We loved the Prinsendam and wanted to sail her one more time so we canceled the … Continue reading 2019 Norwegian Fjords Explorer, MS Prinsendam.
The MS Prinsendam (Picture on top is Prinsendam in Skye Harbor) leaves Holland America Service on July 1, 2019. Before she left the fleet, we wanted to take one more cruise on her. We had planned to travel in July … Continue reading 2019 Celtic Explorer, MS Prinsendam.
“I’m not condemning cruise vacations.” Travel writer Rick Steves wrote in his book “Travel as a Political Act. “I’m simply saying that type of activity is not ‘travel’ it’s hedonism. (And I don’t say that in a judgmental way either. … Continue reading Two Cruise Coda
You can try to shelter yourself from travel’s inconveniences but you’re never completely successful. We’re used to negotiating travel’s mine fields (sometimes literally.) We’ve done winding dusty mountain roads in third world busses, train rides with goats and chickens, and … Continue reading The Long Ride Home
Two weeks ago, I was thinking how odd it was for everyone’s bags to be out in the hallway awaiting pickup while we were still settled into our stateroom. Sunday night was our turn to put out our bags. Each … Continue reading Ending in Amsterdam.
Denmark is not the best candidate for generating hydro power. And yet Denmark is committed to generating carbon free electricity. We have an hour and a half window to sail into Esbjerg because of the tides. Entering the port we … Continue reading Esbjerg Reunion
“It looks familiar and strange at the same time.” All through the cruise people ask me if Norway is like Alaska, how are they different? How are the same? In a way sailing through Norwegian Fjords is a disorienting experience. … Continue reading Fjord Thoughts
When we got off Prinsendam in Stavanger, I noticed some buses and trucks idling. A sign proclaimed Stavanger the sister of Houston. This is oil country. Stavanger is the city in Western Norway closest to the North Sea oil fields. … Continue reading Oil Town — Stavanger